“It was just a lot of scariness.”

I just wanted to contribute and to answer kind of the question of where I was when I got the news about the violence that happened at MSU. So I was at home when I got the text message warning from the MSU police, and I could tell pretty quick that it wasn’t one of the typical warnings. Usually they’re a little… I’d say passive I guess. But I noticed pretty quickly that this one included like the instructions to “run, hide, fight” which MSU pretty much only breaks out in active violence situations. And that’s when I started getting a lot of messages from people, which kind of made me realize the severity of what was going on, and I live pretty close to the hospital, so for that whole night I just kept hearing the sirens of, like, ambulances leaving, and it’s also – the hospital’s not too far away from the police station, so it was essentially just hearing sirens going down the street all night. The only times that I’ve heard, like, just that many sirens going continuously is when I’ve been in big cities like New York or Chicago. So that was already disconcerting, to just be listening to those sirens going all night and kinda knowing that it was bad on campus, but not necessarily having the full picture of what was going on.

And I’m in a pretty big online group with other MSU students, and in it people kept getting updates on stuff that was being said on the police scanner. So I would check in on that ’cause it was easier than listening to the police scanner myself, and I know that, like, people were getting kicked off the police scanner because there were upwards of 50,000 people, like, trying to access it online, and the whatever servers they have aren’t built for that level of traffic. But I just spent the whole night routinely checking in on that, not knowing what to do. Like, I knew I was far enough away from campus that I was safe, but I was still worried and feeling just ultimately powerless. I would check in to see updates that people were giving from the police scanner, and there was a lot of misinformation going around. Maybe not misinformation, but just that the police scanner was reporting on anything that was getting called in, and not all of it was true. But in addition to getting that information, there was just so many people who were on campus, just sending messages like “I’m scared. I wanna go home. I wanna go home. I wanna go home.” And it was just tough being in that situation of not having anything to be done, nothing to offer. I remember the message that stood out to me the most, I still remember it, is somebody said, “It is so surreal to be in the group of people that is being sent thoughts and prayers right now.” And something about that just really… it’s really true. But the whole night was – my head was empty. It was just kind of in crisis mode of worrying about who was on campus, who was affected, if there was anybody who I, like, knew and was personally close to who was on campus or directly affected by the violence. It was just a lot of scariness.

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